Is there room in the Para/Crypto/Fortean world for a gun-toting, paranoid, bipolar, opinionated bastard? A lonely romantic in search of his lost soul? A knight, Samurai, gunslinger, born in the wrong century? A self-destructive, doom-driven survivor seeking redemption? A heavy drinking gonzo outlaw cryptozoologist whose ego is exceeded only by his libido?
No, there isn't. That's why I'm here...

29 August 2010

All Things Sharp and Pointy

I realized that I put so much emphasis on guns and firearms and I've neglected to mention much about blades. Since man does not live by guns alone, I thought I'd gather up a few of my favorites for a family portrait. According to some traditions, sleeping with a blade under your pillow can ward off vampires, nightmares, the Old Hag (night terrors), and bring luck and health.
Of course, this may be a little overkill:

A lot of your paranormal entities (demons, ghosts, wrewolves, vampires, fays...) have an aversion to iron or metal in general. My personal school of thought is that the conductivity of the metal effectively shorts out their etheric or spiritual energy. That's why copper and silver have always been held in such high regard as weapons against assorted nasties. Of course, the effect of cold steel on flesh-n-blood creatures goes without saying!

27 August 2010

Midnight Ride and a Glow in the Cemetery

Last night I decided for no particular reason to take a late night ride through the forest. So, I grabbed my 3 million candlepower spotlight, my video camera, and of course my rattlesnake-handled Taurus 460 Rowland automatic and set out for the Bankhead National Forest in search of Heavy Weirdness.
The sunroof was open, the moon was big and bright, the temperature was comfy, the radio was blaring. The Big Weird Jeep travelled along the twisty mountain roads at speeds most would deem unsafe. In fact, I missed my planed turnoff and finally found a place to turn around, which required me to pull onto an unmarked gravel road which my nav system simply labelled "Restricted". Wonder what's down there that we're not supposed to see? :)
I was hoping to find a nice, desserted crossroads, so in the best Hoodoo tradition I could sit and wait for the Devil to come along seeking my soul. But, a true crossroads is hard to find around here. The best I could find was a three-way intersection. So, I sat there for a while, watching and waiting, but alas, no legendery figure happened by. Just as well, I guess. Afterall, in my haste to get on the road I had neglected to pack so much as a Mercury dime, let alone any foofer dust...
So, after watching the sky and woods for a while I began my return trip. The road passes by an old, one-room church and cemetery built in the 1840's, so I pulled in for a quick look-see. As I approached, I saw what appeared to be a faintly glowing bluish white light among the headstones. At first I thought it was just a reflection from the moon or my headlights on one of the highly polished markers. I pulled into the cemetery and killed my lights. Sure enough, the glow was stil there. I didn't bring any night vision gear, and the camera could barely pick up the light, and I didn't want to "spook" whatever it was by bathing the area in the high-intensity whiteout of the spotlight.
So, quicker than you can say "EVP", I was out of the Jeep, carefully and respectfully making my way among the markers to the source of the eerie lumeniscence. As I got closer, I could finally make out the source of the mysterious glow. Spook light? Orb? Free-floating apparition? Not quite. I identified the source of the glow as a solar powered LED landscape light! Why somebody stuck one of these on a grave I don't know. Maybe it was just a joke or hoax. Maybe the "deceased" had a fear of the dark. Maybe I had interrupted an amateur seance and there was a group of mischievious teens lurking in the woods waiting for me to leave.
Regardless of the motive, I had at least solved a mystery for the night, so my time wasn't completely wasted!

24 August 2010

A GRIPping Tale!

You may recall my post regarding my difficulties with Custom Killer Grips. Well, thanks to the power of the internet, I recieved a response from Ray Duldulao. He explained all the difficulties the company was having due to overwhelming demand. I suppose there is such a thing as too much success too soon. His company DOES indeed put out some quality products, so I certainly hope they can overcome their growing pains and continue to bring their offerings to market. Ray offered to make things right with me and offered sincere apologies.
The ying and yang of it is: today I recieved a way cool set of custom rattlesnake skin grips for my beloved Taurus 1911/460 Rowland. The pics just don't do these babies justice! Every Monster Hunter/Action Figure/Hero-type needs a "signature weapon". Conan with his sword, Dirty Harry with his SW29 .44magnum (and later the Automag), Rambo with his M60, so I may well make this my personal carry piece whenever practical. (hey, you STILL have to have the right tool for the job!)

So, I'm happy now! Well, sorta. Now the rest of the pistol looks a bit too plain! I reblued it myself to get rid of the bright "Taurus billboard" on the slide. (yeah, I can give myself a "blue-job"!) But now I'm thinking it really needs a deep, polished blue, maybe some polished stainless accent pieces, then I'll need to find a snakeskin belt/holster combo, maybe a rattlesnake jacket, a pair of pointy-toed snakeskin boots, one of those cool rattlesnake cowboy hats with a snake head on the brim...
(Hmmm...on second thought, sometimes too much is just TOO much!) :)

08 August 2010

Locals, Monsters, And Local Monsters

Point Pleasant, WV, Fouke, AR, The New Jersey Pine Barrens, Loch Ness, Scotland. What do these disparate locales have in common? Monsters! Not only that, but these areas have embraced their place in cryptozoological history and indeed have entire cottage industries celebrating their respective creatures. Take a trip to any of these areas (among others) and you'll find that their pride in their local monsters is evident.
But, what about other places? Regions where the locals are more close-mouthed about the monsters of their past and/or present? I live adjacent to Alabama's Bankhead National Forest. The people in this area are your typical hard working, self-sufficient, types. People to whom the phrase "mind your own business" is less advice and more a way of life. Don't get me wrong, we're not talking Deliverance here, but we ARE talking about a place where you can buy some some land, raise children and grandchildren, and after you're laid to rest after a long life, the folks at the local store would still refer to you as "those new folks". Independence, self-reliance, and a natural distrust of outsiders are part of the makeup of residents of this area. In fact, before the Civil War, when the state of Alabama seceded from the Union, the residents of this area went them one better and decided to secede from Alabama, forming The Free State of Winston.
So, is it possible that this heavily forested area hides any monsters? Yes, quite possible. While detailed reports and witness accounts are hard to come by, I do know of a few hunters and campers who've described BF-type creatures, plus some strange and horrifying vocalizations. And this area isn't without a history of creepy creatures. Among them
The White Thang. "White Things" seem to be a unique staple of Southern monster lore, with accounts from a few places in Alabama and West Virginia, among others. Another local legend is that of the infamous Downey Booger. Again, there are a number of similar cryptids described in Southern folklore, often referred to as boogers, wildmen, or wolly-boogers. Are these accounts describing the same type of creature or phenomenon?
Remember, fellow monster hunters, just because a region isn't "known" for a monster or creature, doesn't mean there aren't any there. Maybe the locals just don't talk about them. Maybe they don't want the attention, the droves of outsiders, the nuisance of a bunch of monster hunters and researchers descending onto their little corner of the world.
If your research leads you into such an area, a little respect goes a long way. If possible, find someone familiar with the area and its people to serve as a guide, go-between, or negotiator. You just may turn up something!